Tag Archives: walking

A walk by the water

Yesterday, the second half of the year began and with the weather pretending to be springlike we went for a stroll along the edge of the Pauatahanui Inlet. The light from the sun was golden, the air still in sheltered spots and the temperature surprisingly mild.

Birdlife was abundant and active, although a low tide meant photographs were tricky to take, even with a zoom.

The White faced Heron was happy to show its elegant footwork once we sat down and were quiet. It appeared to have plenty of food on offer in the shallows.

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This spot is a favourite for the local Kingfisher population and there were plenty about. They like to sit in the trees, scope out their next meal (mostly small mud crabs) and dive swiftly to catch it.

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This one was more than happy to sit on a rock and look about. It looks very well fed!  Camera gear and equipment needs to be much more elaborate than mine to get good photographs of these zippy, beautiful birds.

These flowers (Kniphofia) displayed winter warmth.

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Our stroll took us past Toe Toe, which always respond to any breeze or wind blowing and can look very stream-lined and active.

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Then past this tree having shed its leaves but glowing with life still. ( The strength of the prevailing wind can be seen in its shape – we really do have tree-bendy winds here)

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And the light on the water was magical.

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Light on the water

Recently we spent some time up on the Kapiti Coast. The weather was perfect and once the heat began to ebb from the day we went to explore the walk along the Waikanae river that is accessed from the Otaihanga Domain.

When we had young children and when my mother lived near this spot we spent many happy times there.
The Domain is a very large flat grassy area which is perfect for ball games and for children running and playing. It is circled by many leafy trees such Weeping Willows which provide shade and opportunities to climb. It also has the benefit of being a more sheltered spot from our trade mark winds. Many people picnic there. And I see from the link to Otaihanga Domain that there is now a very impressive children’s playground.

The river forms the boundary on one side of the Domain and allows for paddling and dabbling and swimming if there is enough water in the river.

Across a suspension bridge is a path to the left which leads to the beach or other branches which can lead to places we have yet to explore.

To the beach.  Kapiti Island in the distance.

To the beach. Kapiti Island in the distance.


My eye was drawn to the light on the water as we crossed over the bridge.
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And then as we moved down the river pathway.
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A Pukeko family were drawn to the water to dabble casting their own effects on the water and the light playing on it.
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I felt freed from the many pressing challenges that have been part of my daily life for a long time as I watched the light and its interplay with the water. It is impossible to know what the exact dynamics were but that added to the mystery which attracts. And if it was the water playing with the light or the light playing with the water it did not matter in the least as the flow of both was so soothing and relaxing.

This quote from artist James Turrell, that popped into my email inbox minutes before I began to write this post, has added an even more interesting dynamic for me to reflect on deeply.

I mean, light is a substance that is, in fact a thing, but we don’t attribute thing-ness to it. We use light to illuminate other things, something we read, sculpture, painting. And it gladly does this. But the most interesting thing to find is that light is aware that we are looking at it, so that it behaves differently when we are watching it and when we’re not, which imbues it with consciousness. – James Turrell

Paws and Pause

There has been a pause in my blogging in the past wee while. In part it has been due to the owner of these paws.
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Jazz, our cat, is almost 15 years old and in the past 3 months ageing has suddenly impacted on him. We knew earlier this year that he has arthritis in his lower spine which means he can no longer spring nimbly and strongly using his back legs.
Then in August his pain levels increased and it was discovered that he had slipped a disc in his back in a different area of his spine. With advice and treatment from the vet that has healed up. However we then noticed he was limping on his front leg/s. X rays show that he has quite severe degeneration in his front elbows and their elbows take a fair percentage of a cat’s weight as they move about.

So Jazz is sore and stiff and now an indoor cat on various medications to support him and keep him as comfy as we can. He has always been a very sociable and lively cat. Not one to sleep contentedly in the garden. Neighbours often reported his visits and some of the neighbours lived a fair distance away. I think Jazz has worn out, not rusted out, as the saying goes.
Increasing the care of a cat requires increased observation, clock watching to time pain relief, tempting an appetite now borne of suspicion about what else might be added in to the food, encouraging more water consumption during hot days in a hot house and of course lots of extra patting and attention.

Jazz does send his Christmas Greetings however having settled for some of today in this Christmas hamper box:-)
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At the same time I have been hobbling with a sore left knee. I too have some degenerative changes and up until late November there was a mysterious “loose body” that appeared on images of the joint. After several unpleasant locking incidents this year I agreed to an arthroscopy. The “loose body” was deftly plucked out and I am pleased to report that my knee is feeling much freer and lighter.

My challenge now is to get my knee moving fully again after all the hobbling about. The joint has become stiff and reluctant to straighten and bend fully. So exercises are a big part of my daily routine now. Holding on to the kitchen bench is a great place for knee exercises and I am on increasingly friendly terms with my physiotherapist. As well I am walking further each day as I rebuild my fitness, stamina and remind my brain to walk normally again.

A walk around the Upper Lake

After I picked up some provisions from the local shops I went for a walk along the side of the Upper Lake in my suburb. We have two man-made lakes and the upper one is smaller, more wooded and quiet. It seemed an ideal place to walk, to reflect and to focus the camera.

A short distance down the path I came across these four geese.

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On the lake were these white ducks.

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As I approached the geese, two pukekos emerged from the long grass and headed to the lakeside, wary of my intrusion.

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Many native trees grow along this path but there are also homes on the left-hand side and a splash of vibrant colour caught my eye in one spot.

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I paused at seat near the lake edge and looked out at the water-lilies and the reflection in the water of one patch of blue sky.

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We have some unusual looking trees in our bush. This Lancewood is one. It makes me think of primeval times.

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My camera batteries died as I neared the steep incline at the end of the lake. That seemed a good indication that it was time to head home.

Walk this way

The mayor of our city is the youngest mayor in New Zealand. He is young and innovative and has been showing the way to healthy fitness and weight management by walking and swimming.

Last night in my suburb, which has a network of walkways, the first of the Mayoral walks was undertaken.

“Join the Mayor and “bend his ear” on the Porirua Mayoral Walk Series
Porirua is home to a beautiful harbour and a stunning array of spectacular landscapes and – but often we’re too busy to take the time to explore everything our city has to offer.
Mayor Nick Leggett has organized a series of “Mayoral Walks” that will allow residents, community groups and businesses to join him in taking full advantage of Porirua’s awesome natural assets – and help keep fit and healthy at the same time!” Source: Porirua City Council Website.

The route through our suburb included our street and we watched as 40 people participated in the walk with the Mayor. I’m not sure how much talking to the Mayor was happening as we live in a hilly part of the area but it was good to see a new approach to celebrating the walking tracks in our city, led by the city leader and some of the councillors.

A walk to the cherry blossom trees

Yesterday I walked down to the stand of cherry blossom trees that was planted on city council reserve some years back in honour of our sister city Nishio, Japan. The display this year is breath-taking. Beneath these trees are millions of spring bulbs, which have almost finished flowering now but they were a picture a few weeks ago too.
Whoever thought of this initiative deserves to be acknowledged and thanked for the special pleasure this area brings.